5 Things Your Optometrist Will Tell You About Eye Health and Aging
Eye health is something that stays under-the-radar compared to other aspects of the human body. Everyday we hear news stories and read articles about improving cardiovascular health, preventing cancer, and losing weight. But rarely do we hear stories about taking care of our eyes and ensuring that they stay as healthy as possible as we age.
Now is the time to change that. Keeping healthy eyes is just as important as maintaining a healthy heart or staying at your ideal weight. Here’s what every qualified optometrist will tell you to do in order to keep your eyes healthy, especially as you approach your 40s and 50s.
Eat the Right Foods
Diet plays a huge role in maintaining proper vision. A healthy diet in both men and women is crucial for strong, vibrant eyes. Choosing the right foods with essential antioxidants and vitamins won’t just help to preserve your vision, it will keep the whites of your eyes shiny and bright. Try to incorporate more leafy greens, nuts, seeds, and fish into your everyday eating routine.
Fatty fish like salmon is the best thing you can eat for your eye health. This is because fish like salmon contains omega fatty acids, which helps the part of the eye called the macula. The macula is responsible for central vision; when you suffer from macular degeneration, chances are you didn’t consume enough fish in your diet.
Put Down the Cigarette
Smoking is one of the worst things you can do to your eyes. Not only does it expose your eyes to cigarette smoke, it causes a great deal of stress on eyes and vision overall. Research shows that heavy smokers are much more likely to develop age-related macular degeneration, or AMD.
Schedule Regular Eye Exams
You see the dentist once (or maybe even twice) a year, so what makes you think the eye doctor should be any different? When you’re younger, it is not as necessary to see the eye doctor every single year, but it should still be done every other year. As you age though, it is extremely important to schedule regular eye exams so that the health of your eyes can be examined.
This won’t just help to prevent eye-related health issues. Many illnesses can be detected through eye exams, like diabetes, high blood pressure, even autoimmune diseases like HIV. At the very least, make a point to visit your local eye doctor every 2 years.
Don’t Underestimate the Power of Sleep
Sleep is like the cure-all for many minor health issues. After a solid night’s rest, you’re likely to feel energized, look healthier, and even see more clearly. When you don’t get at least 7 hours of sleep a night, the tiredness the following day will put an enormous strain on your eyes. If this is a common occurrence, it can impair your vision permanently.
When you exercise, your body experiences improved circulation. This increases oxygen levels throughout the entire body, including your eyes. Increased oxygen allows your eyes to remove toxins and remain healthy.